The PR application in Canada is taking too long, with the immigration office of the country facing an overwhelming volume of backlog in processing applications.
As of December 2021, the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) still has 1.8 million applications waiting to be processed. This includes individuals applying to become citizens, permanent residents, international students, temporary workers, and visitors.
Exactly 1,813,144 applications have been waiting to be reviewed. In comparison, the backlog of applications in October of last year was just 1,719,936. This represents a 1% increase, or more than 21,000 immigration applications, over just 49 days.
Some PR Applications in Canada are Delayed by Officer DM10032
Officer DM10032 is supposed to be a Canadian immigration officer who is responsible for processing the PR application in Canada of many hopeful immigrants.
The IRCC uses codes in its administrative system to identify its officers.
However, there seems to be a problem because many applications have failed to progress for years. Officer DM10032 has not done what he was supposed to do so that their applications can move on to the next step.
Many of those who submitted their PR application in Canada are questioning whether officer DM10032 is still currently employed in the IRCC, their applications have been reassigned to another officer, or if officer DM10032 is an actual living person.
The applicants affected by the delay are still not yet in Canada. They are currently residing in other countries but have been waiting for years to be able to get to Canada.
They applied in 2019 and saw some progress until March 2020. However, their applications have been stuck on the same step from then until now, nearly 2 years since they submitted their documents. These applications are being processed at both the Ottawa visa office and Sydney, Nova Scotia.
Dozens of those who submitted their PR applications and have been assigned to officer DM10032 came together and made use of the internet to gather moral support for their predicament.
The long wait has not been easy on any of the applicants, bringing them distress and much emotional pain. Applicants have not been able to make plans for their future because of the uncertainty of the status of their PR application in Canada. Many decisions are hinged on whether they will be approved or not. It doesn’t help that communication with Canada’s immigration department is not easily accessible, leaving them no choice but to wait for officer DM10032.
Other applicants not assigned to officer DM10032 have had a better experience without the agonizing wait. Their applications were processed faster.
The whole process of the PR application in Canada took around six months, but this was before the COVID-19 pandemic happened and disrupted many of the activities in the IRCC, among other things.
Stories of Applicants Bearing the 2-Year Wait
Online forums show that affected individuals have been calling officer DM10032 as “slow”, “useless”, “silent”, and “asleep”.
Temitope Ogunlade, who comes from Nigeria, says, “I feel victimized”. She is begging officer DM10032 to process their applications so that they can get their lives back.
She feels as if she cannot rely on the IRCC because they have abandoned them. Initially, she wanted to go to Canada to be able to study dentistry. However, this dream is now out of the picture because of the delay in her application. She could not handle the uncertainty of the situation anymore because it had been too much for her emotionally.
Jibi Mathews says that “the last I’ve heard from my officer was around March 14, 2020. That was the last time I saw that there was some action being done on my file”. She currently resides in India but has been waiting to immigrate ever since November 2019. Last month brought her some good news regarding her PR application in Canada. Her medical exams have been uploaded into the system, which is the first time that there has been any progress for nearly 2 years.
Her daughter was just one year old when she started her PR application in Canada. With all the waiting that came with her application, her daughter is now three years old. She plans to immigrate to Canada so that her daughter can have a safer future compared to the situation in their home country.
She says that “I have gone through depression multiple times. Constant anxiety and paranoia as to what is going to happen to my application – are they going to process it? Are they going to scrap it?”
Sehrish Saeed is also one of the applicants who is experiencing delays in her PR application in Canada. She has chosen to work as a visiting lecturer at a university in Pakistan, which is where she currently resides. The possibility of immigrating has dissuaded her from looking for full-time work because she did not want to commit to anything in the long term, only to back out at the last minute because she had to move to another country. Immigrating to Canada has always been her plan, and so it will take priority over opportunities at home.
However, if she knew then how long the application process would take, she would have chosen not to apply. The wait cost her mental and physical well-being.
Saeed planned to move to Canada because it was her father’s dream for her. He was always interested in knowing whether there were any updates on her application. However, he died in 2020, long before any progress could be made.This saddened Saeed and her mother. Her father would not be able to see his lifelong dream of his daughter having a better future in Canada actually happening.
Some are Lucky
Some individuals who plan to immigrate to Canada experienced progress in their application. After three long years, their files were passed on to a different agent. Then, within just one month, it got approved.
Another applicant who was assigned to DM10032 saw progress in her application after two years. She reached out to different institutions, such as the local MP, IRCC, and the intake office based in Sydney. Despite being unsure of what worked, she is still happy that the wait has come to an end. She remains concerned about the other applicants who have not been able to see any movement in their applications.
Does Officer DM10032 Really Exist?
There was an incident in Sydney where applicants who were assigned to officer CB01126 experienced similar delays. Later on, the IRCC said that this officer was not an actual person, but just a placeholder code.
Many applicants are wondering if that happened again with officer DM10032.
The IRCC confirmed that officer DM10032 is a current employee of the institution, but did not provide any more personal information about the officer. They assure applicants that the officers are on top of the applications, even if it doesn’t seem like it to the applicants.
Different restrictions brought about by the pandemic have made it challenging for them to operate at its usual capacity. They ask for patience and understanding from the affected applicants.
An immigration lawyer, Jamie Liew, said that “the immigration system and the government seemingly doesn’t want us to see how the sausage is made, so to speak. You submit your application and you’re supposed to just wait.”
She questions how applicants can demand accountability if officers are protected with the anonymity that the codes provide. Not all applicants can afford legal representation, which is sometimes needed to know the reasons for the delay in their application. This leaves them with no choice but to wait.
Liew understands that the work of the IRCC can get overwhelming, especially with the on-going pandemic, but applicants should be protected as well from such instances.
PR Application in Canada
A PR visa can be obtained through various immigration programs and visa categories, such as:
- Skilled Immigrants Program (express entry)
- Federal Skilled Worker
- Federal Skilled Trades Program
- Canadian Experience Class
- Start-up Visa
- Investors Entrepreneurs and Self Employed
- Quebec Skilled Workers Program
- Provincial Nominee Program
In order to apply for the PR visa, different documents must be submitted. These include IELTS, Educational Credential Assessment, proof of funds, educational degrees or certificates, birth certificates, employment documents, medical and police clearance certificates, and passports.
Documents must be officially translated if they are written in a language other than English or French.
The processing time for the application was usually 4-6 months prior to the pandemic. However, delays are expected during this time.
Approval or denial of the application is based on the comprehensive ranking system (CRS) score. The score is dependent on the profile of the applicant. Core/human capital, spouse, skill transferability, and other factors contribute to the score. Once computed, the applicant will be eligible for the appropriate immigration program based on the score they obtained.